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Bistro Beef Stew

Welcome to Freezer Food Friday!

Please share a recipe that can be prepared ahead and frozen for later use. Let’s help each other stock our freezers.




Serves 8


MAKE AHEAD: The stew picks up flavor after a day’s refrigeration, so it’s nice to make this a day in advance. It can be frozen for up to 3 months.



3 strips bacon, cut into small pieces, or 4 ounces cubed pancetta

3 pounds cubed stew meat or beef rump

2 large carrots, peeled and cut crosswise into large chunks (or 8 peeled baby carrots)

1 medium onion, cut into thin slices

3 medium cloves garlic, minced

1 pound mushrooms, stemmed and cut into ¼-inch slices (or an 8-ounce package sliced mushrooms)

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

½ teaspoon dried thyme leaves

3 tablespoons flour

1¼ cups low-sodium beef broth (or a 10-ounce can)

2 cups red wine, such as Cabernet Sauvignon

2 heaping tablespoons tomato paste

1 bay leaf


1. Line a plate with a few layers of paper towels. Cook the bacon or pancetta in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp. Transfer to drain on the paper towel-lined plate; remove all but 1 to 2 tablespoons of fat from the skillet and discard the excess or save for another use.


2. Add the beef cubes to the skillet and cook, turning them to brown on all sides; this will take about 12 minutes. The meat will not be cooked through. Transfer the browned cubes to a 4- to 5-quart slow cooker.


3. Add the carrots, onion and garlic to the skillet; cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 to 4 minutes, until the onions have softened and become fragrant. Add the mushrooms and stir to combine; cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Season with the salt, pepper and thyme.


4. Add the flour and stir to coat. Add the cooked bacon or pancetta, broth, wine, tomato paste and bay leaf, stirring to combine. Increase the heat to high and stir, scraping the bottom of the skillet to dislodge any browned bits. Transfer this mixture to the slow-cooker.


5. Cover and cook on HIGH for 5 hours or on LOW for 8 hours. Stir once or twice during cooking. Discard the bay leaf before serving.


— Candy Sagon, Washington Post


Per serving: 436 calories, 40 g protein, 10 g carbohydrates, 21 g fat, 8 g saturated fat, 99 mg cholesterol, 594 mg sodium, 2 g dietary fiber





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